42 cinemas across England have today been confirmed as the first beneficiaries of the £30 million Culture Recovery Fund established to support independent venues during COViD-19.

Part of the UK government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund, the awards made by the British Film Institute (BFI) were announced by Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden today, who said:

“We all enjoyed the escapism of a good film during lockdown, but nothing beats the experience of the big screen. This first wave of emergency funding will help dozens of independent cinemas around the country, preserving their unique character and history for future generations.

“Our Film and TV Restart Scheme will keep cameras rolling on British-made film and TV – protecting jobs, boosting this hugely important industry and giving us more great content to enjoy.

“But now we need the public to pay their part too. So I urge everyone to get booking your seats and support your local cinema.

Ben Roberts, BFI Chief Executive added:

“The Government’s support for independent cinemas through the Culture Recovery Fund is having a positive impact for venues and local communities in cities, towns and villages across the country as they reopen with new covid-safe measures in place and new releases including current hits Rocks, After We Collided, Tenet and Monsoon, re-releases of classics such as La Haine and Star Wars, and the forthcoming Saint Maud and Eternal Beauty, all from great talent.  Thanks to the Culture Recovery Fund we look forward to more cinemas gearing up to reopen in the coming weeks.”

Further details of today’s announcement and a full list of the first awards to cinemas – the overwhelming majority of which are UK Cinema Association members – can be found here.

The Association continues to work with the BFI to ensure that the Culture Recovery Fund benefits as wide a range of cinemas as possible. The Fund will remain open until 30 October 2020.

Similar discussions are underway with Creative Scotland on the Scottish Independent Cinema Recovery and Resilience Fund and the Welsh Government on their £18.5 million Cultural Recovery Fund, for which cinemas – amongst other cultural venues – are eligible. An announcement on funding for cinemas in Northern Ireland is still awaited.